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Hoffmann Institute


Tapping into Palestine’s Potential

TAP palestine

Hoffmann Institute

Tapping into Palestine’s Potential

Tapping into Palestine’s Potential

The Talent Acceleration Platform opens opportunities for dedicated youth in Palestine through career-launching educational programmes

For young people in Palestine, joining the global workforce means trying to overcome the political, economic, and security challenges they face. With a high tertiary education level and a literacy rate topping 95%, the potential of Palestinian talent cannot be overlooked. For dedicated young scholars in Palestine, the Talent Accelerator Platform (TAP) opens opportunity in the growing global tech sector.

TAP is a Dutch-Palestinian EdTech company and an INSEAD alumni-led venture. CEO Christian Vezjak MBA’17J and CTO Jafar Shunnar MBA’17D met in the MBA Programme on the Asia Campus. The two started a friendship and realised they had a mutual goal to make a positive impact on youth in their native Palestine. Together, they launched a platform to empower Palestinian youth with leadership skills and technical knowledge. Today, TAP helps leading international tech companies address the talent shortage with skilled web developers and B2B sales representatives working from Palestine.    

christian vezjak and jafar shunnar
TAP co-founders, Christian Vezjak and Jafar Shunnar, talking to Software Development graduates


TAP into Tech Talent

Tech companies operate in a remote-enabled global labour market. There is a world of possibilities when it comes to hiring talent, but finding the right fit can be difficult. As the demand for AI integration grows, so does the need for technically proficient and productive developers who can learn quickly.

German MedTech start-up Floy was having difficulty finding the right fit for their development team on LinkedIn. Founded to integrate AI solutions into the medical field for early disease detection, the company was looking for the perfect mix of technical know-how, curiosity, open-mindedness and communication skills. So, they turned to TAP. The platform screens candidates to deliver talent with the right skillsets along with drive, work ethic and an ability to collaborate well with others. TAP connected Floy and Abdullah Soufan. Although the learning curve as part of the integration team was steep, Abdullah had the right technical skills and soft skills to step into the role with confidence.

Abdullah is thriving in his position. Within a few months of getting hired, he was promoted to the machine learning AI team. He then joined the company retreat in Austria in November 2022, a new experience for the young Palestinian, and is now coming up on his one-year work anniversary at Floy. Sharing ideas and experiences can strengthen a team, as can the diversity of different perspectives.     

marah abdo
Graduate of TAP’s Business Development program, Marah Abdo, now hired by Scigeniq


Future in Focus

This success story is made possible by the TAP approach. The social venture empowers young people with upskilling programmes that bring together technical training and a leadership curriculum. The technical training prepares participants for web development, business development and digital marketing. The leadership curriculum covers communication, behavioural skills and career development. TAP graduates enter the workforce with a growth mindset that makes them a valuable asset to talent-hungry tech firms.

TAP is there at every step in the process. An intensive 16-week technical course is complemented by an internship to put theory into practice. Participants work through the leadership curriculum to be fully prepared for remote work in the international job market. When ready, TAP connects candidates with firms in its broad network of leading tech companies.

Co-founder and CTO Jafar Shunnar says, “INSEAD provided me with a top-notch education and access to a global network, which opened up tremendous opportunities. I aspire for TAP to have a similar positive impact for my community in Palestine. The rewards of education can be life-changing”.

razan abusamra
Product Manager, Razan Abusamra, speaking to TAPers at the office in Nablus, Palestine


Alumni in Action

For INSEAD, this is another example of our alumni leading on business as a force for good. It is also an example of how social enterprises like TAP can deliver value to both business and society. By connecting people, cultures and ideas, TAP creates value for people in Palestine while delivering top talent to global tech companies.

It is a universal truth that young people should have access to quality education and equal opportunity in the workforce and Palestine should be no exception. TAP is opening that opportunity for young people in Palestine. We can’t wait to see what the future holds for our alumni founders and the community they serve.

To explore the talent available for hire, learn more about student programmes and see the impact, visit TAP on the web. The Hoffmann Institute would like to thank Jafar Shunnar MBA’17D and Christian Vezjak MBA’17J for their collaboration.

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